Prontor Professional Shuttersgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread
I am considering having my lenses changed over to a "press" type shutter. I shoot architecture, and being able to shoot multiple exposures without touching the camera would be very nice.
One of my lenses is already in a Copal Press, so I am familar with the operation of these shutters. I was wondering if other people have opinions on how the Copal compares with the Prontor. I recently tried out the action on a Prontor Professional (size 3), and was amazed about how much force it took to trip the shutter compared with the Copal Press. I've heard others say that the Prontor is a great shutter for the studio, but isn't the best choice for location work.
-- Larry Huppert (Larry.Huppert@mail.com), December 10, 1999
I use Prontor on location all of the time. I have the Schneider 90/5.6 XL and the 72/5.6 XL. Beautiful lenses and the shutters are very precise, hard-working and necessary for the work I do. Mostly I need them for repeat pops to build up flash in the interior work I do, but at times I make repeat 1 sec. exposures just to build up time without having to watch a second hand. Very stable, no vibration, and I swear by them. After 10 years my 90 shutter has become a little finicky though. I had it adjusted, and it works better but does not feel right. I was told that for it to feel right I would have to wait about 6 months for the right part to come in, and pay through the nose to have the part put in. I have the Prontor shutter release that allows you to open up the lens from behind at working aperature and at wide-open. This is also not quite right in the older 90 shutter and it will also require expensive and long-term repair. My point is, I think they are great (though the shutter action is hard, but I can't compare to Copal Press because I have never seen one)but I find that they are a bit troublesome, very expensive to buy and repair, service is terrible because of huge wait times for parts, and they aren't even European anymore. They are made in Japan, which is not a problem but the price seems more European too. I have been told that the Copal is more reliable and cheaper, but again, I don't know. I wouldn't get rid of mine but I don't know how I would go if I were starting from scratch again. You can't buy an auto tripper that is strong enough to fire the Prontor because of its action. Someone many threads ago mentioned that there is a bulb release out there that can fire it, but nothing remote and electronic that I know of. I'm considering a 150 in a press shutter and it might be Copal just because of what I have heard and that I can't make my 90 entirely reliable at an affordable price.
-- Rob Tucher (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 17, 1999.